Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.), a former DNC chairman and the 2016 Democratic vice presidential nominee, is joining Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Hillary Clinton’s primary rival, in calling for the Democratic National Committee (DNC) to end the use of superdelegates, saying that they have “undue influence” over the primary process, making it “less democratic.”
“I have long believed there should be no superdelegates. These positions are given undue influence in the popular nominating contest and make the process less democratic,” Kaine wrote in a letter to DNC chairman Tom Perez, according to a copy obtained first by Politico.
The Hill added:
Superdelegates consist of powerful Democratic operatives and elected officials whose votes carry more weight than regularly elected delegates, sometimes trumping the winner of state primary votes.
Sanders received 359 fewer delegates than Clinton in the Democratic primary, yet Clinton won the nomination with 602 superdelegates while Sanders took only 48.
Sanders has been a staunch advocate of ending the rule.
“Last year, Secretary Hillary Clinton and I agreed upon the need for a Unity Reform Commission to move the party in a new and more democratic direction. In a few weeks, this group will have its final meeting in Washington, D.C., and will decide if we are going to move forward in an inclusive way or continue with the current failed approach,” Sanders wrote in Politico in advance of the publication of the report of the Democratic Party’s Unity Reform Commission, which was set up jointly by Sanders and Clinton.
“I encourage any other superdelegate who feels the same way to take the same pledge. I believe the task of the Unity Commission will be made easier if its members know that there are many superdelegates, appointed automatically pursuant to party rules, who don’t mind changes to the current system to make our rules more democratic,” Kaine added.